Dr. Richard Wrangham, Professor at Harvard University and co-director of the Kibale Chimpanzee Project
Ever since Darwin and The Descent of Man, the existence of humans has been attributed to our intelligence and adaptability. Renowned primatologist Richard Wrangham presents a startling alternative: our evolutionary success is the result of cooking. In a groundbreaking theory of our origins, Dr. Wrangham will show that the shift from raw to cooked foods was the key factor in human evolution.
When our ancestors adapted to using fire, humanity began.
Once our hominid ancestors began cooking their food, the human digestive tract shrank and the brain grew. Time once spent chewing tough raw food could be used instead to hunt and to tend camp. Cooking became the basis for pair bonding and marriage, created the household, and even led to a sexual division of labor.
Tracing the contemporary implications of our ancestors’ diets, Dr. Wrangham sheds new light on how we came to be the social, intelligent, and sexual species we are today. A pathbreaking new theory of human evolution, Dr. Wrangham will fascinate anyone interested in our ancient origins or in our modern eating habits.
Dr. Richard Wrangham is the Ruth Moore Professor of Biological Anthropology at Harvard University. He is co-director of the Kibale Chimpanzee Project, the long-term study of chimpanzees in Kibale National Park, Uganda. His research culminates in the study of human evolution in which he draws conclusions based on the behavioral ecology of apes. As a graduate student, Dr. Wrangham studied under Robert Hinde and Jane Goodall. He also helped the late Dian Fossey establish her eponymous Gorilla Fund to protect and research the Mountain Gorillas of Rwanda.
Tuesday, February 28, 2012 @ 6:30pm
Houston Museum of Natural Science
General Admission: $18
HMNS, Leakey Foundation & Harvard Club Members: $12
Please call the Museum Box Office at (713) 639-4629 or reserve your ticket online.
There will be a book signing immediately after the lecture. Reserve your copy of Catching Fire by Dr. Richard Wrangham now.
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Generous support provided by Wells Fargo Bank.